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Before the Next Bomb Drops

4.48  ·  Rating details ·  126 ratings  ·  23 reviews
we are the boat / returning to dock / we are the footprints / on the northern trail / we are the iron / coloring the soil / we cannot / be erased
—from “Refugee"

Remi Kanazi's poetry presents an unflinching look at the lives of Palestinians under occupation and as refugees scattered across the globe. He captures the Palestinian people's stubborn refusal to be erased, gives
Paperback, 100 pages
Published December 17th 2015 by Haymarket Books (first published August 21st 2015)
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Dec 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
Damn, this is really good and intense. Obviously it has a lot to say about the Palestinian/Israeli sitution/conflict/etc., but it has a lot to say about place like Ferguson, and issues like Stop And Frisk. I happened up Remi when I discovered Haymarket Books, and saw a video of him reciting one of these poems and it was powerful. I got no answers to the problems in Palestine - too ignorant to really comment with any intelligence - but man people all over sure have the capacity for too-simple ...more
Jul 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Before the Next Bomb Drops was refreshing and inspiring. Kanazi presents a perspective we hardly, if ever, hear in mainstream media. Reading his words stimulated my curiosity to read more about Palestine, the "War on Terror," racism, the Black Lives Matter movement, and other important issues of the day. When I finished the book, I felt more informed and more engaged with the world than before. I can't recommend this collection highly enough. I also think it would make a good gift for ...more
Sep 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: palestine, poetry
While it may be easy to recognize this book largely for its focus on Palestine, it contains messages that resonate with those who have suffered injustice, universally. Indeed, whether facing different intersections of oppression or even struggling with day-to-day issues, Kanazi’s poetry illustrates understanding, not just of injustice, but of life--in general--and through that allows people to find optimistic paths towards resolution.
Karim Anani
Nov 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
For the next 24 hours, Haymarket Books is giving away the ebook for Before the Next Bomb Drops for free, so here's a super quick review for anyone interested (written while I figure-out a way to cut down the number of books I'm picking-up during this sale):

Before the Next Bomb Drops is a slim but powerful collection of poetry. Like so much modern poetry, it foregoes rhyming for flow, and, like so much socially and politically-minded poetry, it's written to provoke impassioned feelings, not calm
Nahid Soltanzadeh
1. As I was reading the heartbreaking descriptions of Palestinian struggle, I realized this is the first time I'm reading a narrative of Palestine issues by a Palestinian author. Growing up in Iran, I used to hear a lot about Intifada, Aqsa, Nakba, Israel regime, ... but everything I know comes from a narrative offered to me through the political agenda of Islamic Republic of Iran. I feel awful. I wrote a freaking master thesis about narrative critical literacy and the necessity of having access ...more
Jun 10, 2019 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed reading this second volume of Kanazi's poetry, but of course listening/watching to this spoken-word poet is so much more powerful than merely reading them. These are absolutely poems that must be read aloud if you want to get a sense of their full power. I especially love the way he links various struggles to Palestine - whether it's Ferguson or Ireland.
Jan 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Holy shit.

This is the kind of book where you have to stop, breathe, and process after each poem. The kind that breaks your heart and then sets the pieces on fire with rage about the injustices of the world, all while being utterly beautiful.
Jun 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
I loved it but a bit too intense for the psychophant drump lackeys.
Martin Kennedy
Sep 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So intense
عبدُ الرَّحمن
Sep 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Moving and striking!
Sherif MohyEldeen
Aug 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It's a very small book to read it only in an hour or two. Yet, you feel bombed with every page, that you need to breathe and take a break before being able to continue reading it!
Jack Greenwood
Makes your heart beat faster; I had to take deep breaths after each poem. Searing. Verging on rap at times; transcending art forms. Conjures an image of Kanazi growling out these poems with vitriolic anti-American contempt. There are no excuses.
Mar 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Powerful and insightful.
Jul 18, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
2 stars

Here's the thing: I am totally with Kanazi when it comes to his politics/message. Where he loses me with this book is the fact that the poems are just not poetic enough for me. Sometimes I'll read a collection and think "okay, this works more as slam poetry" and can appreciate that it's just a type of poetry that I just don't really care for, but I really didn't think the poems here even live up to that standard. I would echo what another reviewer said about Kanazi's writing is more
Justin Yun
Oct 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wow. What a powerful book. Supposed to be studying for my midterms, but I said, "nah, forget that...I wanna read some poetry." Picked up this book thinking it was nothing more than one hundred pages of poetry that will only gouge my interest amidst my monotonous studying session... Kanazi reminded me poetry is beautiful as much as it is tragic, for one will never know what one will find around the next corner. Poetry doesn't have to make you weep or dance in order for it to be considered great. ...more
Sep 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry, reviewed
Full disclosure: I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaway. Thanks to Remi, Haymarket Books, and Goodreads for the book!

And another disclaimer while I'm at it: going into this book, I had next to no knowledge of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Pretty much nothing, to be honest. Which is absolutely inexcusable. Which made this book all the more eye-opening. He employs a very direct style to his writing, which makes every poem in this collection incredibly powerful. His anger, his
Andrew Kadi
Jul 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Remi Kanazi is brilliant. This book is filled with both moving and empowering verses. The hashtag poems are brilliant.

Overall great to buy and dig into my 2nd book by Kanazi.

For those of us who know about so many of the issues mentioned, this book materializes many of the things we want to articulate at times but cannot (for one reason or another). It speaks in a voice raised to represent our frustrations, anger, and empathy.

For those who don't know as much about issues like Palestine, bombing
Jan 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I loved this collection and I read a lot of poetry. Honest, direct, and passionate. Some poems seem written like they are meant to educate, while others sit on the page like a call to action. As someone who has spent time in Palestine and organized on campus, the different themes covered (the Nakba, BDS, anti-normalization, Israeli occupation) really captivated me. But the collection goes beyond Palestine, articulating a platform for liberation for all peoples facing injustice.

Before the Next
Dec 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I personally really enjoy reading poems not just for pleasure but for a dose of reality. And that's what Remi Kanazi's poems give us. His poetry is social-justice oriented, calling out for justice, freedom, and equality here in the U.S., in Palestine, and elsewhere. Really brilliant and eloquent. Very inspiring. Highly recommended!
Mariliis Elizabeth Holzmann
Here you can find poetic injustice and political poetry in a brilliant and radical form. The message is heard loud and clear, but at the same time I think the writer leaves us some space, we do not feel imposed upon. We see a set of images for us to explore and inhabit at our own will, drawing from the poem what we will.
Jul 18, 2015 added it
Shelves: first-read
I received this book of poems via First Reads.

While I learnt a little more about the struggles of the peoples of the middle east, I didn't really enjoy reading many of the poems. It was too much a sense of despair and anger. I didn't feel that there could ever be a future of hope, peace and humanity in them.
Sep 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This collection of poetry is yet another example of Kanazi's thought provoking & passionate expression of injustice, mobilization & resilience. And if you have a chance to catch him on stage, he really brings his writings to life and motivates the crowds into action!
Cathy Sultan
Remi's book of poetry is both heartwrenchingly sad
and beautiful. His words expose the Palestinian
occupation and dispossession and help create in
your mind's eye the life of the Palestinian people.
Laura Lannan
rated it liked it
Mar 16, 2018
Sarah Ifrah
rated it really liked it
May 31, 2019
rated it it was amazing
Jan 29, 2019
rated it it was ok
Nov 07, 2018
rated it really liked it
Mar 05, 2018
Tanya Kasim
rated it it was amazing
Jul 13, 2015
rated it it was amazing
Jul 29, 2019
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Remi Kanazi is a poet, writer, and organizer based in New York City. He is the author of Poetic Injustice: Writings on Resistance and Palestine and the editor of Poets For Palestine.

His political commentary has been featured by news outlets throughout the world, including the New York Times, Salon, Al Jazeera English, and BBC Radio. Kanazi has toured hundreds of venues across the United States,
“we are the boat
returning to dock
we are the footprints
on the northern trail
we are the iron
coloring the soil
we cannot
be erased”
More quotes…